3 Signs of Dog Car Anxiety and What to Do About Them


In general, over 70% of all dogs show at least one anxiety-related behavior. Like humans, canines can feel scared and stressed out about any situation, so if your pup shows signs of anxiety, it’s completely normal.

Of course, as a responsible pet owner, you’ll want to quell these symptoms if you can. So while going on a road trip with a dog can be fun, you want to be prepared to comfort your furry friend.

Read on for three signs of dog car anxiety and what you can do about them.

1. Shaking and Trembling

While on the road, you might notice that your dog is shaking in the car. They may even be trembling. This behavior occurs because dogs are nervous or fearful.

To put your four-legged friend at ease, place familiar items in the vehicle. Things like their blanket or toys will have recognizable scents, which will make your car feel more cozy and like home.

2. Whining and Barking

Is your puppy usually a pretty quiet one, but then they’ve been whining and barking up a storm in the car? Then they’re probably anxious about being in a moving vehicle. A dog whines in the car because they’re nervous and need comfort from you.

A great way to get them comfortable is to gradually form positive associations with your car. Star by letting your pet explore it while it’s parked in your driveway, and give them plenty of treats and praise.

You can then progress to short and calm rides around the block. Keep lengthening the car rides until your dog is right at home in there.

3. Restlessness

Dog anxiety in the car can manifest as your pup being restless. Try not to get annoyed with them packing back and forth, and you should especially be patient with them if they’re unable to sit still.

Letting your puppy burn off excess energy before a road trip can be good. Take many breaks to let them relieve themselves and burn off more energy.

Choosing dog-friendly destinations is ideal too. When Fido sees that car rides lead to fun places, they’ll be more eager to jump in the vehicle after you do.

If you’re finding that it’s very challenging for your dog to get used to your car, you may have to ask your vet for some assistance. They may be able to give calming aids, such as pheromone sprays, anxiety wraps, or natural supplements. In the worst-case scenario, they can prescribe anti-anxiety medications too.

Alleviate Dog Car Anxiety for a Better Time

Dog car anxiety can be difficult to deal with. We never like to see our pets in discomfort, but we want to bring them places to make treasured memories.

It’s very likely that your pup will be distressed in a moving vehicle, so it’s best to be prepared beforehand. That way, the two of you will have a more pleasant experience.

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